Crozes-Hermitage Les Pierrelles 2017
Crozes-Hermitage Les Pierrelles 2017, Previously a member of the local cooperative, the estate of Albert Belle is one to watch. The estate comprises of 19 hectares situated in the village of Larnage in the northern Cotes-du-Rhone. The vineyards are spread over 4 communes and 2 appellations – Crozes-Hermitage and Hermitage. Yields are very low and ruthless quality control gives supple and generous wines. ‘Les Pierelles’ is 100% Syrah and spends 12 months in oak barrels of which 25% is new oak. A savoury, spicy red to enjoy with robust meat dishes.
Domaine Albert Belle is one of a handful of producers achieving the exciting potential of this area and justifying its reputation as one of the classic regions of France. Philippe Belle oak matures a quarter of the blend of Crozes-Hermitage enhancing the full, ripe flavours and attractive, complex aromas of the wines. Having rapidly forged an enviable reputation for interesting and crafted examples of Crozes-Hermitage at affordable prices, the Belle Family is one of the stars of Northern Rhône.
The domaine extends to 25 hectares in 6 communes and three appellations, Saint Joseph, Crozes-Hermitage and Hermitage. Low yields in the vineyards (30-35 hl/ha) and of course the wonderful climate help produce grapes of exceptional quality. This soil is composed of white limestone clay also known as Kaolin, Granite and Galet stone.
The red wines are produced traditionally in temperature controlled closed tanks using whole bunches of grapes and extended maceration. They are then matured in oak for between 12 and 18 months with 20 to 25% new barrels each year. “Les Pierrelles” is produced in the commune of Pont de l’Isere on a stony vineyard with poor soils, the wine is relatively forward, with lovely textured tannin and aromas of red fruits.
A rich, savoury example from one of the leading lights of the region. Well balanced with dark fruits and subtle spice combined with well integrated wood. Such a versatile wine, it will drink well alongside so many dishes, but is particularly good with grilled red meats and light casseroles.